Maryland adopts tougher standard for lead in school kids’ drinking water

In 2019, a Maryland PIRG report card gave our state a “C” on protecting kids from lead in school drinking water. A new law could help bring that grade up to an “A.”

On May 18, Gov. Larry Hogan signed the Safe School Drinking Water Act into law. The Maryland PIRG-backed bill requires schools to remediate — as in reduce if not get rid of — lead in drinking water taps that test above five parts per billion. State-required testing that Maryland PIRG helped pass has revealed dangerous levels of lead, a potent neurotoxin that’s especially hazardous to children, throughout the state.

“By requiring testing and remediation and expanding grant funding, Maryland has made big strides to protect our kids from lead in school drinking water,” said Maryland PIRG State Director Emily Scarr.

“We’re grateful for the steadfast support from state Sen. Cory McCray and state Del. Jared Solomon, as well as for the work of the Maryland State Education Association, Baltimore Teachers Union, parent teacher associations, health professionals and hundreds of concerned parents from across the state who have supported this bill for years.”

Read more.


Photo: Medical experts estimate that more than 24 million American kids will lose IQ points due to lead exposure — but one of the best ways we can turn the tide on this crisis is by getting the lead out of school drinking water. Credit: Duplass via Shutterstock



Aaron Colonnese

Content Creator, Editorial & Creative Team, The Public Interest Network

Aaron writes and designs materials with the Creative Team for The Public Interest Network for U.S. PIRG. Aaron lives in Arlington, Massachusetts, and spends his spare time playing drums and going for long walks.

Find Out More